Federal Bureaucrats Come After Times Square

Cooperate with the crocodile and you may get eaten last, but you will still get eaten, as New Yorkers hopefully realize now that the liberal hyper-regulators they overwhelmingly vote for are preparing to turn out the lights not only on Christmas, but on Times Square:

Capital New York and CBS2 first reported that a 2012 federal transportation law had ensnared Times Square by declaring that the storied Broadway and 7th Avenue intersection — and other city streets — fell under the 1965 Highway Beautification Act, because they were arterial routes to the federal highway system.

The 1965 law says billboards within 660 feet of a highway can’t be more than 1,200 square feet. And Times Square’s looming luminous signs certainly fall outside those restrictions.

New York Department of Transportation officials say the billboards will stay. However,

City Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg reportedly said the city has been under pressure to get rid of the billboards — or give up part of the state’s federal highway funds.

CBS2 reports that the city is looking at simply trying to get an exemption from the federal law, with roughly $90 million in federal highway money at stake.

But that’s not the only money at stake.

According to The Wall Street Journal, One Times Square brings in more than $23 million annually from the signs, with companies paying several million apiece for the coveted ad real estate.

No worries. If the city enjoys the favor of the regime in Washington, it won’t be expected to obey the law. That’s how things work under a government as massively overgrown as our own.

Too vibrant for the bureauweenies. They may decide to tone it down.

On tips from wingmann and Varla. Cross-posted at Moonbattery.

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